- Rocket Companies (NYSE:RKT): For aggressive real estate bulls, RKT could be a huge discount among blue-chip stocks
- UiPath (NYSE:PATH): Robotic process automation is poised to be a huge market so speculation in PATH could win big
- Sea Limited (NYSE:SE): With the Southeast Asia economy projected for massive gains, SE looks attractive for patient investors
- Baidu (NASDAQ:BIDU): The eastern European flashpoint brings U.S.-China relations possibly into a favorable light
- Carnival Corporation (NYSE:CCL): A bold wager, declining fears of the pandemic could raise CCL
- Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV): Though trading in a troubled industry, LUV could fly higher on the return to normal
- General Motors (NYSE:GM): Though prospects of higher interest rates hurt GM, the underlying products represent a necessity
Generally speaking, the common market adage “buy low and sell high” is inherently appealing to investors because everyone — no matter their income level — enjoys a good discount. However, buying shares that are cheaply priced can be risky because they can fall further still. Nevertheless, you may be able to mitigate some of this risk through acquiring beaten-up blue-chip stocks to buy.
Before I get into it, I need to make a confession. While some of the blue-chip stocks below are trading at all-time lows as of this writing, most of these ideas reflect sharp erosions of market value over the trailing 52-week period. Given that blue chips inherently are stable (on average) compared to smaller market capitalization equities, you’re not going to find too many that have succumbed to record doldrums.
With that caveat out of the way, those who are diving into the discount bin of the capital markets would do well to consider crimson-stained blue-chip stocks. Sure, the smaller companies are sexier in that they offer greater upside potential. But their added vulnerability to sustained downside means that you shouldn’t ignore the below blue chips.
Blue-Chip Stocks to Buy: Rocket Companies (RKT)
To stay consistent with prior articles I wrote, I’m going to say right off the bat that you need to be careful with Rocket Companies (NYSE:RKT). As I investigate the inner workings of the current real estate bull market, I’ve grown increasingly skeptical that the upside catalysts are not what they seem.
Moreover, you should ask yourself a question: if housing prices are only going up from here, how come real estate-related companies, from listing agencies to home builders to mortgage providers like Rocket, are suffering some of the steepest losses in the equities sector?
This contradiction by itself seems very odd, which is why I’m not about to include RKT on my list of blue-chip stocks to buy.
Still, in the spirit of this article, Rocket could work out for you. It’s possible that a combination of perceived higher interest rates and stronger demand for certain professions could drive up housing sales. If so, RKT — which is currently trading hands at an all-time low as of this writing — may be an intriguing idea.
Like Rocket Companies above, UiPath (NYSE:PATH) features a multi-billion-dollar valuation and a decades-long operational history. And they’re also new to the public arena, following their year-ago initial public offering. Therefore, it’s less surprising that these blue chips are legitimately trading at all-time lows.
But is PATH stock one of the blue-chips that you should buy and take advantage of the discount?
Again, I’m going to caveat the discussion by acknowledging that I have a mixed opinion. On one hand, bullish traders could enjoy an upside opportunity here. Specializing in robotic process automation, UiPath is tied to an extremely relevant industry.
According to Precedence Research, the global robotic process automation market commanded a valuation of $2.65 billion in 2021. Experts project that from there, it will expand at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 27.7% to 2030, resulting in a $23.9 billion valuation.
But I’m personally bothered that PATH continues to tumble into the weeds, possibly reflecting competitive concerns. However, if you want to take a stab at discounted blue chips, this may be up your alley.
Blue-Chip Stocks to Buy: Sea Limited (SE)
Just in case you didn’t read the disclaimer above, the blue-chip stocks from here on out are not trading at all-time lows. Instead, they suffered multi-year records in negative performance metrics. Nevertheless, these are also names for which I can credibly envision a long-term upside pathway, beginning with Sea Limited (NYSE:SE).
A consumer internet firm, Sea operates under three segments: digital entertainment, e-commerce, and digital payments and financial services. Though extraordinarily relevant, your immediate objection might be that many other blue chips focus on these sectors. So, what makes SE stock noteworthy?
Mainly, I point to the underlying Southeast Asian internet economy. As the regional population grows, the various countries in the region are becoming more educated and internet savvy. Through enhanced connectivity, people there will adopt digitalization-based initiatives, boding well for Sea Ltd.
Better yet, I’m not just throwing some obvious deductions into the mix. According to a Reuters report, the internet economy in that part of the world could hit $1 trillion by 2030. Therefore, if you can handle the volatility, SE stock could be an enticing idea among presently deflated blue chips.
Due largely to fissures in U.S.-China relations, I haven’t been particularly keen on Chinese stocks, blue chips or otherwise. That went for Baidu (NASDAQ:BIDU), which while incredibly popular, presented steep geopolitical risks. Even after the end of the Trump administration, the Biden White House hasn’t exactly rolled out the red carpet for Beijing.
Thus, I’m not terribly shocked that BIDU stock ended up shedding 39% in the trailing year.
However, Russia’s deadly decision to invade neighboring Ukraine possibly presents an interesting case for Chinese blue-chip stocks. Because of the senseless nature of the invasion, the U.S. and its allies are incredibly alarmed at Moscow’s foreign policy (mis)adventures. But as The Hill pointed out, going after both Russia and China presents a nightmare scenario for the U.S.
Instead, our foreign policy experts could attempt to insert a wedge between China and its Eurasian neighbor. This concept is compelling because the world’s second-biggest economy also has its issues with Russia. Thus, improved relations between the U.S. and China could bode well for BIDU stock macro considerations, though admittedly this is a risky and speculative narrative.
Blue-Chip Stocks to Buy: Carnival (CCL)
Easily one of the riskiest ideas among blue-chip stocks, cruise-ship operator Carnival (NYSE:CCL) has been on quite a ride.
Initially, it was the poster child of Covid-19, with one of its ships stranded in Japan as the SARS-CoV-2 virus did a number on helpless passengers. Later, the shutdown of non-essential businesses led to devastating financial results for the company and its competitors.
Still, you’ve got to wonder how long people will avoid high-contact businesses. If research in Lithuania and later republished by the National Library of Medicine is worth anything, consumers are ready to vacation and reclaim other areas of their lives.
“The results [of the study] indicated that 37% of participants were losing interest in COVID-19 news, 32% had started avoiding COVID-19 news and 26% had stopped following news about COVID-19.” Considering that folks everywhere are ditching common mitigation measures like facemasks, it’s possible that the coronavirus is no longer a fundamental headwind for cruise-ship related blue-chip stocks like CCL stock.
Southwest Airlines (LUV)
Another sector that fared harshly during the initial days of Covid-19 was the airline industry. It didn’t matter if you were a major international carrier or a domestically geared discount player like Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV).
Back in April 2020, the load factor for U.S. air carriers (for domestic and international flights) dropped to an all-time recorded low of 13.8%. Naturally, related blue-chip stocks plummeted.
While the trip to the abyss was limited, Southwest is again raising eyebrows — and not in a pleasant manner. Over the trailing year, LUV stock has lost 35%, invariably drawing concerns. To be fair, that a discount carrier is struggling presents a tough-to-swallow message about the underlying economy. You want consumers to feel confident in their travels, not just health-wise but also financially.
Despite obvious concerns about LUV and the airline industry, the cabin fever effect could play a cynically positive role. Namely, after two years of lockdowns and mitigation protocols, folks are ready to reclaim their lives. This includes taking command of the friendly skies.
Blue-Chip Stocks to Buy: General Motors (GM)
General Motors (NYSE:GM) finds itself down nearly 36% YTD, which fundamentally isn’t the most shocking thing ever.
As I mentioned recently, analysts have generally grown concerned about the automotive sector as interest rates rise. Basically, the vast majority — about 85% — of new car purchases are financed. Therefore, higher borrowing costs would spell trouble for GM and related blue-chip stocks.
Though I understand the hesitation toward the auto industry, the counterargument is that the underlying products are necessary for survival. With 91% of adults commuting to work (during the pre-pandemic days) using personal vehicles, it’s doubtful that a rate hike — which might be modest due to the Federal Reserve not wanting to upset the monetary order — would severely crimp demand.
Plus, General Motors has dialed up the excitement factor considerably. For one thing, you have the company’s pivot to electric vehicles, which should bode well for GM stock in the long run. As well, its introduction of the mid-engine Corvette has been rousingly popular, making GM one of the most intriguing discounts among blue chips.
On the date of publication, Josh Enomoto did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.
A former senior business analyst for Sony Electronics, Josh Enomoto has helped broker major contracts with Fortune Global 500 companies. Over the past several years, he has delivered unique, critical insights for the investment markets, as well as various other industries including legal, construction management, and healthcare.
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